Nelson will benefit from one of China’s largest airlines flying direct to Christchurch, says Nelson Tasman Tourism.
Nelson Tasman Tourism staff were apart of two visits to China as a member of the ‘Kia Ora South’ delegation. CEO Lynda Keene is welcoming just-announced news of a new year-round service by China Southern Airlines between Guangzhou and Christchurch, with three services a week adding 70,000 seats into the South Island.
“We market the Nelson Tasman region as a visitor destination which offers a wide variety of scenery and experiences,” she says. “We are one of the 15 regional tourism organisations (RTOs) which work together with Christchurch Airport to market the whole South Island as one destination.
“I know the new China Southern Airlines service will have a positive impact right across the South Island and be good for us all – but importantly will give the Chinese visitors access to what they want to see. All the RTOs are working hard on being what we call ‘China ready’, making sure we offer Chinese visitors the very best experience we can in the most appropriate way.”
Christchurch Airport continues to be the fastest growing point of entry for Chinese visitors. The growth of Chinese arrivals into Christchurch Airport continues and grew over the peak of last summer at twice the national rate. While national figures grew 39% over that time, Christchurch Airport’s numbers grew 69%. Overall, the airport showed a 59% increase in arrivals of Chinese nationals in the months of December, January and February.
About China Southern Airlines – the largest airline in Asia, in terms of fleet size as well as the number of passengers carried. The airline has more than 90,000 employees and 64 offices around the world, including offices in Auckland, Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney, Singapore, Tokyo, Vancouver, Los Angeles, New York, London, Amsterdam, Paris and Dubai. In 2014, China Southern Airlines was ranked as the world’s third largest airline, measured in terms of the number of passengers carried. It is a member of Sky Team, the world’s second largest airline alliance, so China Southern Airlines passengers enjoy a global reach of 1052 international destinations in 177 countries and regions.